I have started this blog as a way to further track my progress in language acquisition. As of today (Tuesday, March 5, 2013), I am studying two languages: Korean and Japanese. My native language is English. I'm still on the fence about practicing a third language (which would have to be French) at this time....
What else has brought me to this point? Well, I recently decided to become a translator/interpreter in the near future. Yes, I also figured that if I manage to become fluent in a second language, I might as well be able to translate AND interpret. Both have separate and complimentary skills, but I think it's a worthy goal to accomplish. What do you think?
A little bit about my history:
I recently returned from a one-year teaching job in South Korea. Before that, I had just graduated from university. While in university, I studied French, Japanese, and even Turkish at various periods and levels. While in Korea, I found myself focusing more on learning Korean (it became a necessity). Now that I'm back in the States, learning a language has returned to being a fun hobby rather than a necessity. While I'm determined to keep up with the Japanese I learned, I don't want to forget all the Korean that I made such an effort to learn.
So, I'm taking Korean classes, going to Japanese Conversation Clubs, chatting with friends in both languages (by phone, internet, and in person) in an attempt to not only maintain what levels I've reached, but to exceed them. It's a first for me, this experience. While I've been "studying" languages in some way/shape/form all my life, this is the first time I've tried to maintain so many in my head at once. It's definitely a challenge!
Still, just a few moments ago, I asked one of my friends how she feels about speaking two languages each day. Is it hard? She tells me that compared to a few years ago when the experience was new, it's gotten so natural that she's not bothered anymore. This gives me hope. After all, it's not just the years of experience with speaking a language, it's the daily practice. I want to do my best with this new goal.
Here, I'll write down my progress, my failures and triumphs, my thoughts (of praise and criticism), and hopefully it'll be interesting to others who share a similar fate... or those who are just curious. So, cheers to the beginning of something new! Let's get going!